Today marks the 10th Anniversary of one of the most heartbreaking days of my life. My beautiful Aunt Sharon ended her two and a half year battle with cancer and entered the arms of her Savior. She was such an integral part of my life that not a day goes by that I don’t miss her still.
About a year after her passing, I was missing her so much I could hardly stand it. I wanted with all my heart to do something. I knew I couldn’t bring her back, but I felt that I didn’t know how to move on.
Suddenly the idea came to me! I could donate my hair to Locks of Love in her memory. She didn’t lose her hair, but she lost a lot. She talked with me often about how she was affected by her disease and the treatments that attempted to cure it. No, donating my hair wouldn’t bring her back, but it made me feel like I was doing something. As I write this, it doesn’t seem to make much sense, logically. I just know that it made me feel better.
I grew my hair out, chopped it off, and sent it away to bless a stranger battling the same disease that took the life of my precious aunt. I told God that if He continued to bless me with healthy hair, I would continue to donate it.
Little did I know how soon my next opportunity would come about.
You see, I have this goof-ball uncle. He is quite the character! He’s the one always getting into trouble at family gatherings, making the kids laugh, and the moms roll their eyes. Some of my best childhood memories have him in them. About four years ago, I got the call. He was on his deathbed and I lived two states away. To make a very long story short, God performed a miracle and my uncle is still alive today. I cannot tell you what an privilege it was to donate my hair a second time, not in his memory, but in his honor.
As if two opportunities weren’t enough, I was given a third. This time, another precious, beautiful aunt had a bout with cancer. Thankfully, her case was much less severe. This kind, generous, and very loving aunt of mine would not only win her battle, but I could, again, donate my hair, not in her memory, but in her honor.
God is good!
It is my heartfelt prayer that I would never again have to donate my hair in memory of a beloved aunt or uncle (or anyone else, for that matter!) God has truly blessed me with the greatest aunts and uncles. Each and every one of them hold a very special place in my heart and I pray that their lives would be full of blessings and health.
If you are grieving a loved one right now, I truly feel for you. I know that pain.
It is my prayer that you have settled the issue of life after death in your heart and that you know where you will be spending eternity. If you do not, I pray that you would seek Jesus and the truth of the cross.
“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all of your heart.” ~Jeremiah 29:13 (NIV)
Dear Heavenly Father, You know our hearts, our thoughts, our pain, and every tear that we cry. In our grief, help us to remember that You are God and that You are always good. Help us to bless and encourage each other in the midst of our grief. I pray, Lord, that each of us will have settled the issue of where our eternity will be spent. Help us to seek You always, to praise You in the good times, and to trust You in the bad. Thank You that You have overcome death, and that we have nothing to fear. Thank You for the hope that we have it You, and help us to share that hope with others. In Your precious name we pray, Amen.
“…knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord” ~2 Corinthians 5:6 (NASB)
What do you think? How have you learned to deal grief?